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NEWPORT OFFICERS ON TRIAL

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Two Newport CBC officers accused of taking thousands of pounds in bribes have gone on trial at Cardiff Crown Court....
Two Newport CBC officers accused of taking thousands of pounds in bribes have gone on trial at Cardiff Crown Court.

Building maintenance contracts manager Robert Rees, 43, and contracts surveyor Ian Ford, 31, are accused of taking bribes from local builders subcontracted to do work for the former Newport BC.

Prosecutor Peter Jacobs told the court last week Mr Rees was paid£21,308 in cheques and probably thousands more in cash by local builder Dennis Morgan. Mr Ford allegedly had a kitchen renovated as payment from builder Geoffrey Ellis.

Mr Jacob told the court: 'Morgan and Ellis were paid far too much for far too little work they did do, and were also paid for work undertaken by other builders.

'Morgan used materials supplied by the council and then charged the council for those materials, claiming he had supplied them himself.

'Rees and Ford authorised payments to these builders. It was blatantly dishonest.'

Mr Jacobs said it was impossible to put an accurate estimate on the amount of money the four had cost the council but said Mr Morgan alone had submitted 192 invoices and was paid more than£310,000.

Mr Rees denies five charges of corruption, two of conspiracy to defraud and four of furnishing false information.

Ford denies corruption, two charges of conspiracy to defraud and four of furnishing false information.

Mr Morgan denies five charges of corruption, conspiracy to defraud and two charges of furnishing false information. Mr Ellis denies corruption, conspiracy to defraud and two charges of furnishing false information.

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